Daily Archives: May 24, 2010

Thoughts on Being LOST


I watched the LOST series finale last night–and can I say it? I *KNEW* the island was Purgatory years and years ago! But the writers denied that the island was purgatory, so I dismissed the theory (even though it seemed to hold up). The thing is, knowing this did not make the finale any less meaningful or significant for me, because I still enjoyed the journey with all the characters, and I still savored all the plot twists and details and detours; those details are all that make made the show unique. (Note: that the island is purgatory is still being debated–The Marquee Blog on CNN says the island is not purgatory).

We can all write stories about A Stranger Coming to Town, one of the biggest archetypes in literature (and essentially all stories are either about a stranger coming to town, or a man/woman going on a journey), but in the end, the details make each story unique.

Still, I have questions about the finale remaining–but then again, a story has no obligation to answer every single question, just the big ones. And a story has to focus on its characters first and foremost to capture an audience.

I loved that all the characters were happy in the end. I know there are some who didn’t like the cheez-fest of reunions, but I loved it. It made me feel satisfied. I didn’t stop at wanting happiness for Desmond and Penny or Jin and Sun, I wanted them all to be happy because I just spent 6 years rooting for every single one of them. They were joyful when they realized what being LOST was.


I’ve been lost these days. I’ve been feeling lost about my novel revision and one big personal dream.

Feeling lost culminated in resentment and self-pity and bitterness and sadness and grief. I don’t like feeling, or being, those things but there I was; crying in bed, walking around lips pursed, feeling un-generous, selfish, sorry for myself, not conscious of any way out of the hole. Maybe, because I was lost, I wasn’t even in a hole; maybe I was out in an open field, surrounded by pitch black darkness, maybe there was a door. I was just too lost to notice.

And in this vastness of being lost, I became what I hate: I became…envious.

Is there any worse poison than envy?

I wanted to be cured. I happened across my friend Ericka’s blog post entitled, “The Envy Flu and Its Cure.” I laid in bed, hopeful of being cured, of letting the feelings wash over me. There were a lot of feelings. And even more recently, Tayari measured out some tough love on “penvy,” and its dangers, on her blog. All of what they wrote is true.

But me? I wasn’t just dealing with envy and penvy, I was…lost. After the envy dissolved, I discovered I had no sense of direction, no clarity. Being lost was the root cause of my grief.

Part of my struggles with my novel revision is that I feel so utterly lost. It is the same feeling I’ve experienced at points of my first draft, but more pronounced, because–shouldn’t I *know* what to do by now?

There are those who love being lost–but me? I’m the kind of person who obsesses over the weather, and who is well versed in the future 10 days of weather, precisely because I don’t like being caught off guard. I love the invention of navigation systems, and before GPS, I always had a Thomas Brothers Guide in the car. I equate being lost to lost pets–something akin to death, a state without love or home or safety. Being lost is purgatory. I will fight being lost. In the world of LOST, I’m Jack.

I was once given the advice to SAVOR being lost–that it was NOT the worst thing in the world to have happen to me. I have to tell myself to savor being lost. Being lost can be an incredible story. Being lost is rich with emotion. Being lost is beautiful. Being lost brings lessons. Being lost can be a good thing. Once, I was lost in the Japanese countryside, unable to speak a word of Japanese, having overshot my destination of Nikko via train. Instead of freaking out (something I’d normally do), I doubled over with laughter on a bench at the train station. I want to feel that. I want to savor being lost like THAT.

...but then we weren't in Nikko
(that’s a picture of me laughing when realizing I was LOST in the Japanese countryside)

So that’s what I’m trying to do. I’ve decided to open my eyes, disconnect from my distractions, and look around. So I’m joining Nova: I’m taking a break from Facebook, from Twitter and exploring. I’m making way for something amazing, too.

I think it will be good for me.

I’ll update you on what I’m doing to explore being lost.


Filed under Helpful, Life, Writing